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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    7B Selkirks USA
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    609

    Looking for drivable warm weather mountain bike destination

    Wanting to escape the mud season in mid November. Coming from N Idaho. For reference, St George is 14 hours. Not really looking to exceed that. Thinking Moab/Fruita might be too chilly? Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    san diego
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    1,534
    I went to Moab/Fruita/GJ for Thanksgiving week a few years ago, the holiday was early that year similar to your timing. Temps were good during the day except when it was windy - mid to high 50s in Moab and mid 40s to low 50s in CO. And it went below freezing at night, high 20s. It rained the second day of the trip which shut down trails in CO for a few days so that can happen. There are ride options in Moab for when things are wet. If it's dry you just have to deal with the cold. Not a big deal IMO, and that's coming from a Socal cold weather wimp. I might do Moab for Thanksgiving this year, but will keep some options open in case conditions don't look good. I've done StG/Hurricane that week and its a bit warmer than Moab, but fewer options if there is rain.

    If you want guaranteed good weather fly down to AZ if the drive is too far. Sedona is 4-5 hours past StG. Flying with car rental would be pretty easy in AZ. Sedona can be a bit chilly but like StG nice during the day. Prescott, Phx, BCT, Tucson are all prime riding then. Another fly-in option is LA. Seriously. There is some awesome riding above Pasadena in the San Gabriel Mtns, think 4-5,000ft descents. You could also hit the Santa Monica Mtns, Ojai, Santa Barbara, even Palm Springs/desert ride season would be starting.

    If flying isn't an option consider Norcal. You could do a loop hitting Redding, Chico, Auburn then over to Santa Rosa, Mendocino, Paradise Royale, redwoods, and back. Can give you more specific suggestions for any of these if interested.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    san diego
    Posts
    1,534
    Thanksgiving TR for reference: https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...highlight=ahab

    406 did a similar trip there the following year https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...t=thanksgiving

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rossland BC
    Posts
    1,091
    Moab is fine that time of year, with good deals on cheap hotels (itís too cold to camp) and uncrowned trails. Just sleep in late and ride during the warmest parts of the day. Depending on the year the high elevation trails might be snowed out, but the sandy rides can be in their prime. After more Fall bike trips to the desert than I can remember, and now that bikes are free on most airlines, Iím going to try Bentonville in Arkansas.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Banff
    Posts
    20,273
    Quote Originally Posted by Kootenai View Post
    Wanting to escape the mud season in mid November. Coming from N Idaho. For reference, St George is 14 hours. Not really looking to exceed that. Thinking Moab/Fruita might be too chilly? Thoughts?
    not excited about the drive?
    or the location?

    or come north and ski in the CND rockies


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    2,834
    Coming from Nidaho the decision to go south or east from SLC gives about the same distance to StG or Moab. Maybe a game time decision based on weather?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    907
    Quote Originally Posted by kootenayskier View Post
    now that bikes are free on most airlines
    Wait...what? Is this true? If so, how did I miss this?

    Really? Which airlines?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Banff
    Posts
    20,273
    Quote Originally Posted by beece View Post
    Wait...what? Is this true? If so, how did I miss this?

    Really? Which airlines?
    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/delta-...ing-bikes.html


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Shadynasty's Jazz Club
    Posts
    8,256
    Went to Moab last November. Got into the 20s at night, but was perfect during the day. AM shuttles are still running, thereís hardly anyone there so plenty of camping spots and empty trails. Maybe the best time to go now that it gets so crazy down there.
    Remind me. We'll send him a red cap and a Speedo.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    SLC
    Posts
    358
    I'll echo what Evdog said. I'm a pretty big fan the riding in AZ during the winter. Coming from Salt Lake, we have much closer access to St. George and Moab but IMO AZ is better. Lots of variety even just in the Phoenix area. Vegas is also super fun if you're up for the gnar at Bootleg. You also have all the Vegas shenanigans if you're into that kind of thing. And flights are usually pretty cheap to Vegas or Phoenix.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    northern BC
    Posts
    18,009
    Flying into Vegas and drivivng north was the cheapest way to get to Moab for us, i think i will be going back next fall

    I did Vegas 15 years ago and it is now way more expensive, i wonder if thats because it appears that there are less losers gambling and the gambling subsidized the price of everything ?
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Paper St. Soap Co.
    Posts
    2,320
    I-15 is an easy drive, so don't let the drive discourage you from St. George. I have done thanksgiving week mtb trips in SW UT a couple times, Sedona a few times, Moab, and Santa Cruz. I think about 50% of them had 1 loss or shortened day due to rain. Sedona has really got busy in the last ~5 years, but maybe just before t-giving would be fewer hikers. It will be cold at night, but nice when sun is up, these days I spring for hotel or condo over 12 hours in cold tent :-)

    Might be worth checking flights to Bay area, PHX, LAS if you can get nonstop on airline that doesn't charge for bike bags from GEG.

    What kind of riding are you looking for? Been to any of the places listed above before?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    7B Selkirks USA
    Posts
    609
    All good advice! Particularly on the airlines (now we may forego the driving...) So now just looking for sweet pre-powder season trail riding. I have made a couple trips to PHX/Sedona. So I don't need to go there for awhile. Tucson seems like mixed reviews? That brings back St George/Moab or..... tell me more about SoCal. And what kinda riding? Good all day rides 3-6 hours. Single track techie, xc, trail, with views. No need for shuttles but not against them as long as it involves climbing along the way. Gotta digest more of these trip reports.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Paper St. Soap Co.
    Posts
    2,320
    If you have never biked in Moab or SW Utah(stay in Hurricane ), I would recommend those...The NorCal loop Evdog mentioned would also be good, but involve more driving.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Eugenio Oregůn
    Posts
    7,064

    Looking for drivable warm weather mountain bike destination

    Evdog nailed it.

    And donít underplay NorCal. It can ride amazingly in mid November with perfect weather. UC Santa Cruz, Soquel Demo / Nisene Marks, Annadel SP, Henry Coe, Camp Tamarancho, Napa Skyline, UC Berkeley Side O, and possibly Mendocino/Jackson Demo state forest can all be *amazing* in mid November if dry or light rain. Packed fast clayey loam with redwood needle duff. To die for.

    I canít speak to SoCal as I only Road rode when growing up down there.
    _______________________________________________
    "Strapping myself to a sitski built with 30lb of metal and fibreglass then trying to water ski in it sounds like a stupid idea to me.

    I'll be there."
    ... Andy Campbell

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